Portsmouth Rotary Goes Virtual
Please note that until futher notice, our virtual meetings shall be starting at 10:30.  The ZOOM room will be open at 10:15 am for socializing.  See you in the cyberverse!
Virtual Meetings Are the New Normal (at least for now)
We may be socially distancing, but that doesn't mean we can't be social.  Join the meeting and enjoy some much needed fellowship (plus you get a peek inside other Rotarian's houses!)
Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 840 6654 9289
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Please join Rotary's Weekly Fellowship Meeting by ZOOM on your Computer with or without video OR join by mobile or home phone.  
1. Join on Mute and stay on Mute until you need to ask a question.
2.  Stay on MUTE for the National Anthem - except for the person called on to sing (no pressure).
3. Leave all stupid jokes to Leo and Jon - they've proven their adeptness to this task.
4.  Register a VENMO account. The Rotary Fine Master WILL be making an appearance.  No VENMO, No Problem, fines will be doubled for non-VENMO offenders.
5.  Keep the CHAT civilized.  Anything you say is recorded and stored for history... if you wouldn't publish it in a Newspaper, don't publish it in the Chat window.
6.  ENJOY and have FUN.  Rotary is all about Fellowship.  We're rapidly isolating to a point that some among us will need our fellowship for a strong boost of morale.
7. People have embarrassed themselves mightily on Zoom conferences since self-isolation started.  Google search "ZOOM Video mistakes" to learn from the mistakes of others. 
Check your email for the meeting links.
Recordings of Our Meetings Available
If you miss one of our virtual meetings, you can catch up by streaming the recording.  Just follow the link...
Meeting Recording for May 21:
Password: 8S&qX5#@
Top of the Week May 27, 2020
Top of the Week!
Project: Volunteer Surge
Looking to help out in these trying times but don’t know how or where?  Check out this opportunity from the Global Impact Group.
Rotarians and their supporters have the opportunity to lead recruitment of the first one million citizens to participate in Volunteer Surge. Together, we can reduce suffering and save lives.
New Scholarship Fund Honoring Dr. Clayburgh
Nancy Clayburgh whose husband Jim passed away on Friday, May 1st  would like to establish a Rotary scholarship fund in his name.
Dr. James B Clayburgh Scholarship Fund. Anyone wishing to support this fund may do so by mailing contribution to Rotary Club of Portsmouth, PO Box 905, Portsmouth NH 03802-0905.
York Rotary Virtual Road Race
Cindy McKenna, Chair of the York Rotary Races sends this along…
The York Rotary Four on the  4th Road Race this year is going virtual!  Super easy to walk or run a 4 mile course anywhere any time during that week! We are challenging other clubs to jump on our bandwagon and register to participate! As expected, majority of funds raised will go towards Covid-19, mostly local.
Use the link below to sign up.  
Keep Up to Date on the COVID-19 Pandemic
For up to date information and available resources in New Hampshire visit the State's web page:
The City of Portsmouth's website is also a great source for local COVID-19 information.
Helping Cross Roads House in These Trying Times
Some of the ways you can still help at Crossroads:
• Meal Preparation - Prepare food in your home and drop it off at the shelter. This includes both dinner entrees and bagged lunches. Whether we provide the ingredients and pans, or you do, this will help us to continue serving residents three meals a day when volunteers are unable to come into the shelter. Please contact our volunteer coordinator, Kristina Siegenthaler, at,  or 603.436.2218 ext. 107, for more information.
• Donations of Food and Supplies - Donations of food items and supplies from our “Wish List” are greatly appreciated at this time. You can view our “Wish List” online at Donations can be dropped off at the shelter at any time, or you can shop our Wish List ( from the comfort of your home and have items delivered to the shelter.
• Monetary Support - Our annual “Benefit by the Sea” fundraiser has been posted to August 29, 2020. This event provides funding for nearly 30% of our shelter operating budget. Now more than ever we need your help to ensure we can continue serving some of our most vulnerable neighbors. If you are able, click the link below to make a donation today. The gift you give today will make a tremendous difference for the families and individuals who rely on Cross Roads House to make it through this difficult period.
Rotary Dinner Service the Salvation Army
Dinner services continue at the SA and Rotary is there to help.
If you want get in on the fun (while maintaining appropriate social distancing), contact Sara Treacy at 603-661-8588.
She has moved away but you can still Make Peg’s Day!
Dear Fellow Rotarians:
Especially in these challenging times, it is time to up our communications game.
Our dear Peg Millar has moved (at least temporarily) to be closer to her son, but would still like to keep in touch with all of her Rotary friends.  Peg would love to receive cards or other correspondence.  Her address is:  Peg Millar, Harbor Chase, 4150 Indian River Blvd Vero Beach, FL 32967.
Thank you from Rotary Connections Committee
Rotary Connections is back!!!
Now more than ever Rotary Connections let’s our members know that their Rotary club is thinking of them.  Members facing a health issue, death in the family or a life celebration, we are here!  
If you know of any of our members who may need a Rotary Connection, please reach out to the Cathy Nickerson.
Rotary Log for May 21, 2020
Rotary Log for May 21, 2020
Virtual Rotary Log, Volume 1: Issue 10.  Now into our 10th virtual meeting, a new norm has emerged.  Attendance is holding steady between 50 and 60 participants per meeting with Leo and Jon leading the way.  President Leo presided.  With the ring of the bell, our meeting began.  July Ringer followed the Pledge of Allegiance with a rousing rendition of America.  Senor Rice gave the truncated invocation— “coffee, friends, fellowship and Zoom.”
Bill Hurley cut short his golf outing to join the meeting—such loyalty in trying times!  Trish Cummings gave us an update on Peg Millar who turned 90 on the May 22.  Trish reminded those who wish to call her to give her prompts so she knows where she is.  And Leo repeated his Zoom meeting rules spiel.  He followed this up by informing us Lindsey is “off” the market—spoken like a true creepy uncle.  Congratulations, Lindsey, on your nuptials! 
Up next, our general announcements segment.  Trish thanked all those who came to the Edgewood Center to give their support to the staff and residents during the Co-vid crisis.  The event made Trish feel her dad was smiling from above.
Caitlyn Hassett reminded us about the upcoming vocational awards.  So far, she has received nine nominees and has asked for more candidates.  She gave some examples of potentially worthy candidates. They include DPW workers, in-house health care workers, assisted-living workers, teachers, delivery people, etc.  In other words, people who have gone above and beyond to serve their fellow human beings.  Please send in your candidates by this week as winners will be selected next week.
Flagg grumbled about not being on the list.  All the while his Zoom profile showed him as being Aileen Duggan.  Hopefully, she got meeting credit for that.  Jon, you could have sold it if you wore a wig. 
Ian O’neail give us our weekly Rotary Club History Minute or two.  Rotary’s first meeting took place in Chicago on February 23, 1905.  And yes, it was a Thursday.  The four attendees were Paul Harris, Gustavus Loehr, Silvester Schiele, and Hiram Shorey.  Schiele was the first president.  Harry Ruggles, a printer, introduced singing.  There were no dues for the first Rotary club.  They collected 50-cent fines to cover costs.  And the name “Rotary” came from the practice of rotating meeting locations. 
Speaking of fines, Neal Ouellett took the virtual stage and apparently wanted to use the opportunity to practice his alphabet. He established fines with multiple A, B, C. D., etc. categories. 
First up, Craig got busted to the tune of $5 for having a business advertisement as his Zoom backdrop. That’s a bigtime faux pas in Neal’s eyes and Craig’s pocket.  Next, Joannie was zinged for selling Barbara Miller’s designer mask collection at $25 each.  And according to Neal, all proceeds going to them.
The first global fine categories were: A) anyone who visited Ricci Lumber--$2. B) anyone who went to the hospital for a doctor’s appointment with mask--$1. C) Anyone who owns a handmade mask--$1. D) Anyone who has no mask--$5. E) Folks who own a Federal government with underwear mask? --$2.  Trish then got fined $1 for interrupting. 
The next category, the Fauci 2019 handshake and huggies rule violators. They are A) the Ben Wheeler and Dan Hoefle remote handshaker--$1. B) The Hollywood hug--$1; C) Hydroxychloroquine users--$2.  D) no worries--$5.  There were more but you get the picture.
Flagg, of course, just could not leave it alone.  Wearing a Justin Finn business sweatshirt at Justin’s behest, and telling us about it, he got zinged for $2 for the Aileen screen name.
As a final gesture, Neal held up his distant handshaking device—a six-foot pole with a blown-up rubber glove at the end.  Yeah, another creepy uncle moment.  By the way, Neal raised $240 during the last fine-master session.  Well done, Neal!
On to our clever quarantining segment, movie titles were thrown out as recommendations for future viewing.  “Blue Boys,” “The Round Table,” “Ozark” the Netflix series and “Patriot Acts” the series were shouted out.  Flagg will give us his “At the Movies” review of these works at our next meeting.
Up next, James Petersen introduced our guest speaker, Trish Cummings. She would give us a riveting firsthand account of what life is like in nursing homes during the Co-vid crisis.  Trish has a BS in Health and a Masters in Health Administration from UNH.  She has served on several boards including the Portsmouth Regional Hospital.
Trish was club president in 2013-2014, visiting some of us who were building the Puddle Dock ice rink that year. Those of us on hand will never forget the horrified look on her face when she found us working without safety glasses. Especially since Dan brandished a nail gun like some 1930’s gangster with his Tommy gun.  Like a Zephyr on a mission, she disappeared without so much as a stir. When she returned, she had an ample supply of safety equipment.  The undersigned still has his pair to this day!  What fun we had! 
For the past 25 years, she has been the Administrator at the Edgewood Center, a 156-bed licensed assisted-living facility and nursing home.  To hear James explain it, she takes Wednesdays off to golf. And she holds a black belt in martial arts and changes her last name when she goes home to Kittery.  Well, only two of those are true.  James left it up to us to decide.
Trish described the heroic efforts taken to stop Co-vid 19 from taking hold in the Edgewood Center.
It began in early February when the Center’s Director of Nursing (DON) informed Trish to keep an eye on this new virus.  On February 11, the WHO gave the new virus its name—Co-vid 19--and the race against the clock was on.
By February’s end, Center principals came up with a battle plan to prevent the entry of the virus into the building.
On March 3, a tabletop meeting was held to address issues of staffing, supplies and protocols to implement.  By then, the federal government issued a Level 3 travel advisory, impacting travel plans of the Center’s staff members.
On March 6, visitors were screened at sign-in and the staff implemented infection control practices.
On March 8, the CDC issued an advisory to screen everyone entering a building for symptoms.
During the morning of March 10, the Center limited visitors to family members only.  That afternoon, the American Healthcare Association issued additional guidelines restricting all visitation. They were immediately put into effect at the Center.  No one in the industry ever expected the virtual lockdown to last this long.
On March 11, the WHO declared the contagion a pandemic.
By March 14, all laundry was done in-house.  Families could no longer do laundry for residents outside of the facility.  Nothing was accepted from outside the facility such as food prepared by family members.  Entry into the building was limited to essential personnel only.
By March 15, only essential items would be accepted into the building.  Visitation was permitted only through a plexiglass wall with the resident on one side and the family on the other.  A Zoom dance program was initiated to allow the residents to participate remotely from their rooms.
On March 21, conference calls with the state’s DHHS, hospitals, etc., led to the cessation of state inspections. They typically occur unannounced, once a year.   Many regulations have been relaxed or suspended to allow health-care facilities to adapt to the crisis.  The local, state and federal agencies have been extremely supportive to the Center.  Portsmouth Regional Hospital has been very helpful.  The readiness response team meets daily.
On March 21, there were 44 known cases in N.H.  and 18 confirmed in Rockingham County.  The Center’s staff were required to work for only one facility to prevent the potential spread of the virus.  HIPPA and employment regulations were suspended at this time as well.
On March 26, all residents had to practice social distancing and all activities were suspended.
By March 27, all staff and residents were required to wear masks and were checked daily for symptoms.  Staff had to be symptom free for 72 hours in order to work.  If any symptoms were discovered, the staff member could not work for 10 days and had to be symptom-free for 72 hours.  Visitation was now limited to windows only.  Getting residents with dementia to comply with mask-wearing was and remains difficult.  Contact tracing began.
Fulltime staff began receiving a $300 per week stipend.  Part-time workers began receiving $150 per week.
Rotary Log 2020-05-21 part 2
On April 20, all staff were tested.  All were negative.  Trish felt like she was leading the staff to slaughter until the results came back.
By April 30, 15 long-term care facilities in NH were reporting cases of Co-vid 19.  Most of the cases were in dementia units where compliance was difficult.
On May 4, a resident tested positive for the virus.  The resident showed symptoms as early as May 2.  The resident was quarantined immediately and then shipped to the hospital.  The resident is doing well.  Contact tracing was initiated, all the Center’s employees were rapid tested at PRH and all tested negative.
Trish mentioned if she has PTSD from this, one moment will spur it. The look on the DON’s face when she informed Trish one of the residents had tested positive.
On Tuesday, May 5, the state was contacted and informed the Center would need to have everyone tested.  The state sent the rapid response unit that evening.  All but four employees waited patiently to be tested—some waited for two hours.  Some of the younger staff even had their parents with them while they waited in line.
One staff member tested positive.  Fortunately, the staff member had only worked one 8-hour shift to contact tracing was a simple task.
Lots of help was received from many corners.  The National Guard donated and delivered 6,000 protective gowns.
Due to the two positive tests, the Center was placed on lockdown.  Sections of the building were designated as quarantine areas.  Fourteen-day quarantining was implemented.  Full protective equipment was donned by all staff.  For two weeks one elevator was dedicated to the quarantine floor.
Staging areas were created.  Quarantine, isolation and transition areas were established.  Anyone that presented with symptoms was immediately placed in the quarantine area and had to remain there for 14 days.  Any resident that had to leave the building for a doctor’s appointment, etc., had to quarantine for 14 days upon return.
With no end date in sight, Flagg turned the meeting to questions.
Tiffany asked about when will visitation be brought back.  The answer—not until we reach Phase 3.  We are currently in Phase 1.  There is no date certain and no date in sight.  At a bare minimum, a facility has to go 28 days without any positive tests.  Nursing homes are now tested weekly.
Linda Brownell mentioned not being able to see her 94-year-old mother-in-law whose health is failing.  Trish said cards will be accepted, but no deliveries.
Ed Mallon mentioned the clear toll this is taking on Trish and asked how she is handling it.  Trish said she really can’t turn it off.  It is an all-consuming issue and you can’t take your foot off the pedal.  Our support is very important to her.
Flagg mentioned how therapeutic these virtual meetings are. They are the closest thing to social gathering that many of us have.  The meetings are deliberately goofy and irreverent to alleviate the painful challenges of social distancing.  So true.
And with that, Larry led us in the Four-Way Test and our meeting was adjourned.
Until next time.
Respectfully submitted, Mark Lorusso.
Photos by Don Chick
New Members Photos
To see photos of our new members click on the following link:
May 28, 2020
Scholarship Awards
Jun 04, 2020
Jun 11, 2020
Vocational Awards
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Upcoming Events
New Members Orientation
Aileen Dugan State Farm Agency
Jun 08, 2020
9:00 AM – 10:00 AM
Basic Needs Committee Meeting
Infinite Imaging
Jun 10, 2020 8:00 AM -
Jul 01, 2021 9:00 AM
Communications Committee Meeting
Portsmouth Country Club
Jun 11, 2020
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Salvation Army Soup Kitchen
Salvation Army
Jun 16, 2020
4:00 PM – 6:15 PM
Basic Needs Committee Meeting
Infinite Imaging
Jul 08, 2020 8:00 AM -
Jul 29, 2021 9:00 AM
Communications Committee Meeting
Portsmouth Country Club
Jul 09, 2020
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
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Virtual Rotary Meeting 05-21-2020
C. 2020 Rotary Club of Portsmouth, PO Box 905 Portsmouth NH 03801
eBulletin Editor: John Rice